Mueller’s attempted to establish a court-proof conspiracy case against Trump and his campaign, but that in no way limited his investigation

(Posted to Twitter on March 25)

@SethAbramson has a new thread out. I agree with much of it, but also disagree with much of it. The agreements will be obvious by comparing his thread with the ones I posted yesterday and today. Here I set out the disagreements. 1/23

Thread by @SethAbramson: “(THREAD) The already-infamous “Barr Letter” is a deeply dishonest and misleading document that richly deserves methodical public evisceratio […]”Thread by @SethAbramson: “(THREAD) The already-infamous “Barr Letter” is a deeply dishonest and misleading document that richly deserves methisceration by committed journalists. So I hope you’ll read…https://tinyurl.com/y5zcgfzt

The most fundamental disagreement is over our respective predictions about what the MUELLER REPORT has reported *on*. Most of the other disagreements follow from that very fundamental one. 2/23

I’ve argued at length that Barr (pace Abramson) is not to be faulted for his letter, at least in the sense that both parts of the Barr letter (on collusion and obstruction) can be justified, both in terms of the law and in terms of what is likely in Mueller’s report. 3/23

Much of @SethAbramson’s thread will be shown to be off-base when we see (as I am sure we will) that Mueller did in fact undertake an investigation into the very narrow question of whether the government could bring to court a conspiracy case against Trump and his campaign. 4/23

As I said in my latest thread, it is not clear when or why Mueller took this course, because Operation Crossfire Hurricane was opened as a COUNTERINTELLIGENCE investigation 5/23

— but it is clear that at some point the Mueller probe, either at the outset or sometime later, did turn into an 18 USC § 371 inquiry — that is, a narrow criminal investigation with a very high bar, rather than a counterintelligence investigation. 6/23

BUT HERE’S THE THING: that in no way limited what Mueller could and DID INVESTIGATE. In fact, precisely because he was trying to reach the evidentiary threshold for criminal conspiracy, 7/23

Mueller could go full bore for almost three years (counting Crossfire Hurricane), hoovering up an enormous, mind-boggling amount of potentially counterintelligence-relevant information, 8/23

which is now in the hands of the Department of Justice, ready to be mined for any evidence of wrongdoing, criminal or not. 9/23

Hence the enormous significance of Mueller’s agreement to testify before the Gang of Eight about “findings of Mueller’s counterintelligence investigation into Trump (i.e. whether the president is under the influence of a foreign power)” 10/23

Julia E. Ainsley on Twitter“Breaking: @KenDilanianNBC reports that the FBI is prepared to brief the Gang of 8 on the findings of Mueller’s counterintelligence investigation into Trump (i.e. whether the president is under the i…https://tinyurl.com/y5qofnd7

And that will just be the beginning, because Dems after this top secret counterintel committee meeting will request (even demand) a national security report based on the massive Mueller investigative materials, 11/23

and that national security report will pull together all the publicly known incriminating evidence about the Trump campaign and a lot we don’t know that Mueller has uncovered, which will then become part of the *official* national records. 12/23

I’m totally convinced now that Mueller has played Trump and the Republicans, who are prematurely rejoicing over the Barr letter and enthusiastically making Mueller out to be an American hero. 13/23

If Mueller testifies, as I fully expect he will, that the Trump campaign undermined America’s national security, and that there is probative evidence of that in the voluminous materials his investigation collected (even if none of it amounted to outright criminality), 14/23

how could Republicans possibly oppose now a Congressional request to the DOJ and FBI to make that evidence publicly available? After all, until yesterday, virtually all Republicans were *clamoring* for the full release of all the underlying materials. 15/23

As Abramson says, there are many other ongoing investigations that are threatening to Trump that have, directly or indirectly, been spun off from the Mueller probe, 16/23

but this misses the much more important point that there has been no COUNTERINTELLIGENCE investigation to date THAT WE KNOW OF into Trump-Russia. 17/23

Such an investigation could not have been “spun off” from the Mueller probe in the way that the other investigations have been, because any highly sensitive counterintelligence operation would have to be run from the Washington DC offices of the DOJ and the FBI. 18/23

Compared to such an investigation, which has either been going on, unbeknownst to us, concurrently with the Mueller probe (which as I’ve said has focused on the 18 USC § 371 question) or will be launched shortly, 19/23

the other ongoing investigations are of minor, ancillary importance — at least so far as Trump campaign collusion is concerned. 20/23

Here are links to two recent threads I’ve written in response to the latest breaking developments: 21/23

22/23

Thread by @twoodiac: “I’m continuing to think my way through the Barr letter today. Here are my latest thoughts. 1/21 I was assuming that Mueller’s report would b […]”Thread by @twoodiac: “I’m continuing to think my way through the Barr letter today. Here are my latest thoughts. 1/21 I was assuming that Muet would be a counterintel report — as I had long argued it …https://tinyurl.com/y3lnpg6j

23/23

Thread by @twoodiac: “According to Barr’s letter to Congress, there are two parts to the MUELLER REPORT. It is clear now that in the first part of it, Mueller mus […]”Thread by @twoodiac: “According to Barr’s letter to Congress, there are two parts to the MUELLER REPORT. It is clear now that in the fmust have addressed the question whether the Trump campaign had v…https://tinyurl.com/yxwqhk5d

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The Resistance. Vote Blue: True Blue American. We look forward, they look back. We’re progressive, they’re regressive. @twoodiac

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Thomas Wood

The Resistance. Vote Blue: True Blue American. We look forward, they look back. We’re progressive, they’re regressive. @twoodiac